ALSC’s New Competencies: The Managerial Connection

Guest post by Sophie Brookover, ALSC Education Committee

Public library managers who work with library staff serving children have an updated item in their toolkit for encouraging and supporting the strongest possible services to children and their caregivers. The Association for Library Service to Children (ALSC), a fellow division of ALA, has developed a new set of Competencies for Librarians Serving Children in Public Libraries, and we, members of the Education Committee, invite you to review the Competencies with your staff.

(If you’re an ALSC member, these full-color, camera-ready PDFs are available for free. Have your ALA login and password available.)

The revised Competencies reflect current concerns about diversity, inclusion, and overcoming barriers to service and learning. They also acknowledge the pervasive role of technology in all our lives, and the position librarians hold as mentors and advocates for multiple learning styles and platforms.

We need your help to speed the adoption of the revised Competencies throughout the profession. Ways you can offer strong, practical endorsements include:

  • Embed them in professional development opportunities for your staff;
  • Integrate them into performance review instruments for all staff primarily serving children;
  • Map departmental and broader organizational goals to them.

So, what’s inside? The Competencies cover six key areas of service, encompassing the many domains of expertise library staff should develop and practice:

  1. Commitment to Client Group
  2. Reference and User Services
  3. Programming Skills
  4. Knowledge, Curation, and Management of Materials
  5. Outreach and Advocacy
  6. Administrative and Management Skills

Library managers are natural allies with ALSC in nurturing the professional growth of child-serving staff. Join us! If you have questions about implementing the updated Competencies, or just want to discuss continuing education matters, ALSC’s Education Committee members are happy to speak with you!

Explore posts in the same categories: ALA Updates, Leadership, Management, Publications

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *